Catalyst 08 – Day 3 – In over my head

Today was another great day at Catalyst.  Andy Stanly closed with some great stuff, met with a few guys from Community, and an African Choir made everyone sob.

It’s kind of like summer camp.  You want to go back home and see your friends and family but at the same time you want to stay…because it’s awesome.  That’s how Catalyst is. Along with the above I was also pleasantly surprised by both Dave Ramsey and Franklin Graham.  Dave brought the smack down as he talked about the 5 enemies of unity – which are:

–    Poor communication
–    Gossip
–    Unresolved disagreements
–    Lack of shared purpose
–    Sanctioned incompetence

It really struck a chord with many people because although they all seem like no duh concepts, you quickly realize how in your organization those things exist.

Franklin Graham reminded us of how powerful the Gospel actually is.  I say reminded because I am pretty sure in the midst of contextualization many of us have lost the simple, profound, and amazing truth of the Gospel and how the Holy Spirit works through it. His time was also a spotlight on his dad – a man whom many know but cannot fully grasp the influence he has had in his life.

Before Andy Stanley got up to close the conference – Matt Chandler brought the thunder.  Seriously Catalyst planners, you should have given that guy more time. I listen to a lot of communicators and I am hard pressed to think of anyone else that could have said what he said in the manner in which he did it and it have the impact that it did.

Finally Andy brought us to a close with several different leadership quotes that have deeply challenged him.

–     “To reach people no one else is reaching, we must do things no one else is doing.” – Craig Groeschel

–    “The next generation product almost never comes from the previous generation”. – Focus, Al Reis

–    “What do I believe is impossible to do in my field…but if it could be done would fundamentally change my business”?Future Edge/The Paradigm Book, Joel Barker

–    “If we got kicked out and the board brought in a new CEO, what would he do?  Why shouldn’t we walk out the door, come back in, and do it ourselves?”  – Only the Paranoid Survive, Andy Grove

–    “When your memories exceed your dreams, the end is near.”  – Michael Hammer

All in all my Catalyst experience was better then the prior year.  It might have been the car accident setting the tone of brokenness for the rest of the week or it could have simply been that after the past 7 months I’m just a different person.  Stretched, challenged, beat down, uplifted, forced to swim in a hurricane, and just generally reshaped…which I believe isn’t a bad thing.  I have learned more about leadership in the past 7 months then in my entire life.  I have made plenty of mistakes, have had a few failures…but I never stopped.  I never stopped, because I think being in over your head is the best place to be.

Stay tuned tomorrow for my final Catalyst recap.  Catalyst 08 – Day 4 – The Dwarf House.


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